Former President Obama does not have high hopes for UConn men, women in his NCAA Tournament brackets

Former President Barack Obama does not have high hopes for the UConn basketball teams in the NCAA Tournament.

Obama, an avowed basketball fan who hosted both teams at the White House following NCAA title runs, unveiled his men's and women's brackets on Wednesday.

On the men's side, Obama picked 13th-seed Iona to upset No. 4 UConn in the first round Friday. He has Rick Pitino's team beating VCU in the second round before losing to No. 1 Kansas in the Sweet 16.

Obama has Duke, Houston, Baylor and UCLA in the Final Four. He picks Duke to beat Houston for the national title.

"Well, I did tell my team that," Pitino said when asked Thursday about Obama's pick. "I've always said that President Obama was one of the most intelligent presidents we've ever had, and this lends credence to that.

"No, obviously, we're all big fans of President Obama, and it was really special for him to pick Iona. Obviously he didn't see Connecticut play. But it was exciting for my guys to hear that as well."

Obama's women's bracket has UConn beating Vermont in the first round Saturday and Baylor in the second round Monday. He picked UConn over Ohio State in the Sweet 16, but Obama has the Huskies losing to Virginia Tech in the Elite Eight.

UConn has advanced to 14 consecutive Final Fours, but the ex-President sees the streaking ending.

Obama's Final Four: South Carolina, Stanford, Virginia Tech and Indiana — all No.1 seeds. He has defending national champion South Carolina repeating with a win over Indiana.

Meanwhile, President Joe Biden picked the UConn men to beat Iona and Saint Mary's before losing to Kansas in the Sweet 16. Biden has Kansas, Texas, Marquette and Arizona in the Final Four, with Arizona beating Kansas for the title.

Biden has the UConn women reaching the Final Four, but losing to Big East foe Villanova in the national semifinal. He has South Carolina beating Stanford in the other semifinal, with Villanova — yes, Villanova — upsetting South Carolina for the NCAA title.

The First Lady, Dr. Jill Biden, is a Villanova alum.

"As you know, in this household, Villanova always wins," Biden tweeted.

Pitino, winner of two national titles, said his granddaughter filled out a bracket for school.

"My granddaughter said, 'Pop Pop, could you fill out a bracket for me for school? We're doing it.' ... Prior to that, I didn't look at the bracket at all. I kept saying, should I put Iona in here? She wants to win," he said.

"I looked at it, and I sent it to her, and there are so many games that, when you say who's going to win, you just can't pick it. I then texted her back and said, 'Honey, I'm not real good at this stuff. So don't think you're going to win because of me.' "; @pauldoyle1